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Wednesday, 11 December, 2002, 14:59 GMT
Deepcut deaths 'may never be solved'
Deepcut Barracks
Police are investigating four deaths at Deepcut Barracks
The families of two young soldiers who died at an army barracks in Surrey, have been told they may never know how their sons died.

Surrey Police is investigating the deaths of four young soldiers since 1995, all found with fatal gunshot wounds at Deepcut Barracks.

Detectives have told the parents that they are unable to establish whether Privates Geoff Gray and Jim Collinson were murdered or committed suicide.

The investigation into those two deaths is likely to be closed next month, although it will continue looking into the other cases.

Four deaths
Private Cheryl James, 18, from Llangollen, north Wales, died Nov 1995
Private Sean Benton, 20, from West Sussex, died June 1995
Geoff Gray, 17, from Hackney, died Sept 2001
Private James Collinson, 17, from Perth, Scotland, died March 2002
Geoff Gray from Hackney, east London, was found dead at Deepcut on 16 September 2001.

Despite having two bullet wounds to his head, the Ministry of Defence concluded Private Gray had taken his own life - a claim his parents reject.

His father, also called Geoff, said he and the parents of James Collinson were at a meeting with Surrey Police when they were told the report on the evidence gathered would go to the coroner, not the Crown Prosecution Service.

James Collinson, also 17, died from a single gunshot wound to the head in March this year.

Private Geoff Gray
Private Gray had two bullet wounds

"They haven't got what they said was the 'golden nugget' of evidence," Mr Gray told BBC London.

"They feel maybe some soldiers are not coming forward and giving them as much information as they need.

"The outcome was that it looks like the investigation will be wound up towards the end of January."

The parents believe the only way of finding out what happened is a public inquiry.

Mr Gray said he would not give up trying to restore his son's reputation.

"We feel that his name's been sullied by this suicide tag and we need to find out the truth."

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
BBC London's Kurt Barling
"A full independent investigation may be the only way to save the Army's reputation"


Background


See also:

07 Dec 02 | England
03 Dec 02 | England
02 Dec 02 | England
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